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Further explanations of the origin of the continental slope, such as ascribing it to catastrophism, normal faulting, a wave-built terrace, or marginal downwarping, appear to be unsatisfactory. Instead, the writer considers continental slopes to have been constructed by the folding of the continental rise against the continental block, forming a eugeosynclinal orogen. Accordingly, continental slopes would be the flanks of such orogens; a secondary cause for some continental slopes may be the modified scarp left after a rifting-apart of a continental mass by continental drifting. Once formed, initial continental slopes undergo modification by erosion and sedimentation. A proposed mode for such geomorphic evolution is presented. Continental shelf formation is a part of this volution.
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